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Netanyahu blasts French peace initiative, says only direct talks will work

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Thursday blasted a French initiative aimed at relaunching peace negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians as "distancing" the prospect of direct talks.
The premier asserted that Israel was prepared to begin direct bilateral talks with the Palestinians "immediately without preconditions.
"Israel adheres to the position that the best way to end the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians is direct, bilateral negotiations," Netanyahu said in a statement.
"All other political initiatives distance the Palestinians from the negotiating table," he added.
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